Bengal CM slams PM Modi for bulldozing the federal structure in the name of coronavirus crisis
On Monday, during the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s fifth virtual conference with chief ministers of all states, Bengal Chief Minister Mamta Banerjee slammed the Centre government for playing politics when the country needs to stand together to fight coronavirus pandemic. In the meeting, when all the CMs updated Mr. Modi with the situation of the ground, as the country was just one week away from lifting its lockdown 3.0, there was a turn of events when Bengal CM submitted her report.
Ms Banerjee said, “The Centre should not play politics in this crucial time. This is not the time to play politics. Nobody ever asks our opinion…Do not bulldoze the federal structure.” She accused that the Centre was following a different a “script” as it almost never considers Bengal’s opinion, while it was giving preferential treatment to some states, especially the BJP-ruled states. She said, “We as a state doing our best to combat the virus…All the states should be given equal importance and we should work together as Team India.”
The Trinamool Congress supremo also highlighted that the BJP-ruled central government was attacking and cornering it using Covid-19 as a reason. In the past the Centre has criticized Bengal administration over its handling of the health crisis and accused it of concealing the actual count of death. The Centre again locked horns with the Bengal leader by raising the issue of not bringing back migrant workers stranded in other regions.
Last month, the Ministry of Home Affairs sent two Inter-Ministerial Central Teams to the state to review its efforts towards beat Covid-19. The Centre has sent its IMCT to the state multiple times and in its latest report, the government alarmed the nation of emerging hotspots in the state. Besides, on Saturday union home minister in a letter to Ms Banerjee criticized her decision of not cooperating in bringing back migrant workers.
In response to Mr. Shah’s letter, she said, “When we are cooperating with you, why are you attacking us? Why is it always Bengal, Bengal, Bengal ? Why criticise?” She urged the central government to come forward and work together as one team, ‘team India’.
Bengal CM, besides demanding for economic package, asked the Centre to provide assistance in bringing back the state’s migrant labour stranded in different regions of the country.